Ask Sam letter

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To Sam


Dear Sam, when I was 12 I had a boy who hit me frequently and made me do things I wasn't entirely willing to do like letting him penetrate me In a garden, letting him touch me inappropriately and making me touch him inappropriately. When it happened at first I thought I liked it but I think I was just scared cause I was under threat if I told any of his friends or didn't do as he commanded. I thought I was enjoying the sex cause I hit puberty earlier, I didn't scream, I didn't move, I willingly kissed him and I didn't tell him "No" He was always horrible to me and I had no way of escaping him because I didn't trust social workers and I had a lot of mutual friends with this boy Including my best friend who was his cousin. We were both 12 at the time. Both children who didn't know any better. I was scared of seeing him again and blamed myself for what happened. Was I indeed raped or am I over analysing what happened? To the law it was rape, but if I was in my 20's when it happened would that make it consensual? I am now 16 and legally able to distinguish rape from consent but I'm still questionable. Please help.

Ask Sam



It’s never okay for someone to have sex with you when you do not want to. Even if you are just unsure. Making someone so scared that they have sex is abusive and it’s not okay when this happens.

I'm really glad you felt able to write a letter to me about this. What happened before isn't your fault and you shouldn't blame yourself. Doing things because you're scared and being threatened doesn't mean you gave consent.

The law says neither of you could consent to the sex as you were both under 16. What happened to you was sexual assault, and it would still be rape no matter how old you were. Because you were being forced to do something you didn’t want to do.

No one should make you do anything you do not want to do, no matter who they are. You can't change what happened, but you can take steps to come to terms with what happened. It sounds like you have kept this to yourself for a long time and perhaps now you might feel ready to talk about it and get some support.

Childline know telling someone about abuse can be a lot to cope with. But they're there to support you through that process – our counsellors are ready to listen. You could also look at My Decision which offers a step by step guide for victims of sexual abuse.

I hope this has helped.

Take care,


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